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clear that no u.s. boots will be on the ground in libya but how long air strikes by u.s. pilots will continue is on everyone's mind right now. those strikes, which include six more tomahawk missile strike have led to a rapid sweep of forces east to west. in the past 49 hours, rebels from taken key towns and striking at sirte, as we speak, the hometown of moammar gadhafi. nbc's chuck todd live at white house here. some of the president's critic says he should have given the speech that we're expecting tonight before the strikes began. >> reporter: well, look, there was even some debate among some supporters of the president on that very notion. but that's -- that's not going to happen. you can't turn back the clock. so the decision was made. they would wait until there was -- they were done with the u.s. portion of this. and so, it's not a mere coincidence that when the handover to nato to run this no-fly zone is taking place, that the president is going to use the occasion to both make the case for why he made this decision, number one, and number two, it's going to be valedicto
. is the threat to the u.s. and the world growing? murderous attacksing libyan forces answer president obama's address with a new round of attacks on civilians, according to the rebels. >>> and camelot, it's not. the new miniseries on jfk and jackie o., many historians say it's more fiction than fact. we speak to the producer 0 of the series ahead. >>> good afternoon. we begin with the disaster in japan where the prime minister says the country is in a stalts of maximum alert, this as the fukushima crisis worsens. japan officials have said they believe there's been a partial meltdown at three of the plants' six reactors, that's half. now today radioactive water has been discovered in the maintenance tunnel at the plant. in a a spatefrtepha fr l io ocns e nd ncte peltoeer he nnoced 2 etrothor nd, stonrm plonm seepifr the damaged nuclear power plant into the soil outside the facility. plutonium is years. but so far, officials claim the levels found are not harmful to human health. meanwhile, more traces of radiation have been found in the u.s., raising new concerns. today in california one of
. thank you very much. >>> now to libya and another day of furious fighting. u.s. navy officials say coalition forces are attacking pro gadhafi troops who have tried to storm populated areas. libyan artillery, mechanized forces and mobile missile sites as well as ammunition supplies are also being targeted. the british say the libyan air force has been destroyed and coalition forces are now flying over the country with impunity. but reports are mixed about the rebels' ability to repel gadhafi's forces in misrata and elsewhere. nbc's jim ma say da joins us live now from tripoli. jim, is this a clear sign the coalition really is stepping up the intensity of their campaign? >> hi, martin. yes, it is a clear sign, and they're stepping up their campaign because they can step up their campaign now. they spent the first four, four and a half days of this operation taking out everything that would prevent them, prevent the airplanes, the nato planes from doing this very thing. they believe that the libyan air defenses as you suggested in your lead now are just about out of commission, which
and the u.s. on plans in libya. since that speech is, rebels armed with anti-aircraft guns have been rooted by gadhafi forces firing from thanks and artillery. the question is this. does the coles need to arm the rebels with weapons capable of taking on gadhafi's force ss? speaking to brian williams, the president said he's not ruling it out. >> we're still making an assessment partly about what gadhafi's forces are going to be doing. we're not taking anything off the table at this point. >> nbc's mike viqueira is live at the white house. vick, so the president playing it safe? >> you might say that. the administration has maintained since the beginning of this that the united states security council resolution that is the grounds for all of this military action permits the arming of the rebels. there are obviously a lot of pitfalls here starting with the history of such a practice. you look back in american history terrorist afghanistan with the mujahadin, many of those arms turned against amicfoes gollhe wba go anotr atitidung t '70s and '80s. nicaragua would be another example. fraught
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